Symptoms such as bloating, diarrhea, gas, stomach pain and stomach cramps may indicate gastric problems including heartburn and irritable bowel syndrome, states WebMD. Treatments for gastric symptoms include lifestyle changes and medications.
Heartburn causes burning and pain in the upper abdomen, stemming from an irritation of the esophagus brought about by stomach acid, according to WebMD. Overeating and pressure on the stomach from pregnancy, obesity or constipation often lead to heartburn discomfort. Some foods, such as tomatoes, citrus fruits, chocolate and caffeinated products, among others, relax the lower esophageal sphincter and allow acid to enter the esophagus and cause heartburn.
Reducing pressure on the abdomen by wearing loose-fitting clothes and staying upright after snacks and meals for at least three hours helps eliminate heartburn or reduce its intensity, notes Healthline. Chewing gum or taking over-the-counter medications that contain magnesium, calcium carbonate, aluminum, bicarbonate or alginic acid may also be effective.
Certain foods, stress and hormones trigger irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, that can lead to abdominal pain and cramping; bloating; gas; diarrhea or constipation, explains Mayo Clinic. There are a variety of stimuli that may trigger an attack of IBS, such as certain foods, stress and hormones. However, not all people who suffer from the condition react to the same triggers. Treatment centers around targeting and eliminating causes and addressing symptoms with fiber supplements, antidiarrheal medications, antispasmodic medications and antidepressants.